Toronto Workshop 2016 Recap

Toronto Workshop 2016 Recap

Last weekend, I led a workshop in Toronto with Alanna St. Laurent, a Detroit photographer. The workshop focused on cityscapes and architecture, with many locations in and around Downtown Toronto. We had a great group with us and great weather most of the weekend.

I had a great time and I think the workshop went well. I thought I’d share a few photos

We started off with a nice evening on the Toronto Islands. As they face downtown, they provide a gorgeous view of the skyline:

Centre Island - Toronto, ON

Classic Is Always Good

A few of us kept going after the islands to shoot Dundas Square (a mini Times Square). Unfortunately, an event and some maintenance killed my favorite angles, so I’m not happy with the shots I got there.

We started Saturday morning very early with sunrise at Riverdale Park. Located on the east end of Toronto, the park offers fantastic views of the city. While it rained overnight, we got lucky as some fog rolled in the park. My favorite shots are before sunrise, as some clouds blocked the golden hour.

Riverdale Park - Toronto, ON


Riverdale Park - Toronto, ON

Waking Up

We spent most of the day in the Financial District shooting architecture and abstracts. We started with City Hall and Nathan Phillips Square:

Nathan Phillips Square - Toronto, ON

A Game Of Curves

I then went closer to capture some abstracts of the curved towers:

City Hall - Toronto, ON

Follow The Curve

We spend a lot of time around the Toronto-Dominion Centre, designed by Mies van der Rohe. The dark, metallic towers provide endless photographic possibilities. I took advantage of my 17mm tilt-shift lens for a couple of shots:

Toronto-Dominion Centre - Toronto, ON

Straight And Tall

Toronto-Dominion Centre - Toronto, ON

A World Of Lines

I then moved to my 24-70mm to capture some detailed abstracts:

Royal Bank Plaza - Toronto, ON


The Royal Bank Plaza is always an interesting building, especially when contrasted with the surrounding buildings.

Royal Bank Plaza - Toronto, ON

The Stairs To Another World

We ended the afternoon by visiting the Allen Lambert Galleria. Designed by Santiago Calatrava, the structure is one of my favorite locations and a must-see for architectural photographers.

Allen Lambert Galleria - Toronto, ON

Hard Crossings

After dinner, clouds rolled in and blocked the sunset. We still managed to photograph the blue hour from Bathurst Bridge, one of the best locations to shoot cityscapes downtown Toronto.

Bathurst Bridge - Toronto, ON

It’s Always Nice To See A Familiar Place


Sunday morning was spent indoors, discussing our approach to shooting and post-processing. We spent the afternoon shooting on the University of Toronto campus. The first stop was the Robarts Library, a massive brutalist building:

Robarts Library - Toronto, ON

Up, Up And Away

Then we ended the workshop at the Royal Ontario Museum and the Michael Lee-Chin Crystal, designed by Daniel Libeskind Studio. The striking modern structure can be shot in many ways, but I decided to focus on reflections this time.

Royal Ontario Museum - Toronto, ON

Distorted Reality

Royal Ontario Museum - Toronto, ON


Toronto has a lot to offer in terms of cityscapes and architecture. These are just some of the locations we could visit in a weekend of shooting. If you missed this workshop, I’m already thinking about doing another one next year! If you’re interested or you would like to see specific locations, leave a comment below or send me a message.

Also, don’t miss my workshop with Angie McMonigal at the Out of New York Conference in October.

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